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Florida Announces Plans to Review Its Standardized Testing Program

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The Florida Department of Education has announced plans to review the state's standardized testing program. The announcement comes after a year of criticism concerning testing policies and opposition toward the new standards.

Florida Education Commissioner Pam Stewart said that in addition to reviewing the state's testing program, she is establishing a "Keep Florida Learning Committee." The Committee will examine areas where the state can deregulate the school system, boost parental involvement, review instructional material and track the introduction of Florida Standards throughout the upcoming year.

"At the Department of Education, we are committed to ensuring our education system has appropriate policies and procedures in place to help Florida's students excel," Stewart said.

"I am proud to lead these efforts, which I am confident will help us better understand students' needs so we can better prepare them for colleges and careers," added Stewart.

Some school districts have passed motions against standardized testing and certain parent groups are trying to opt their children out of various exams. The Department of Education explains that its review of standardized testing is intended to show parents how the tests are used.

Stewart says that there is no plan to stop the end-of-course exams or the Florida Standards Assessment, which will begin in the spring.

I think the Florida Department of Education needs to review standardized testing in order to garner more support of the Florida Standards Assessment. Once parents understand the benefits of testing, I hope to see the fight against administering these exams cease. I also believe the Keep Florida Learning Committee is a good idea -- one of its main goals is to boost parental involvement, which is an integral part of student success. Looks like Florida's education system is heading in the right direction.

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